|December 2015 Gift Books, Holiday Catalog, and More
Check out these great selections from our Gift Books section. Plus, here are more highlights from our Holiday Catalog! Also, mark your calendars now for our Author Readings in 2016. And we invite you to donate to the Giving Tree!
The Holiday Catalog
|Peruse these highlights from the Holiday Catalog, courtesy of the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association:
by Mary Beard
World-renowned classicist Mary Beard narrates the unprecedented rise of the Roman civilization. Even two thousand years later, it still shapes many of our most fundamental assumptions about power, citizenship, responsibility, political violence, empire, luxury, and beauty. Like the best detectives, Beard sifts fact from fiction, myth and propaganda from historical record, refusing either simple admiration or blanket condemnation. Far from being frozen in marble, Roman history, she shows, is constantly being revised and rewritten as our knowledge expands. Indeed, our perceptions of ancient Rome have changed dramatically over the last fifty years, and S.P.Q.R., with its nuanced attention to class inequality, democratic struggles, and the lives of entire groups of people omitted from the historical narrative for centuries, promises to shape our view of Roman history for decades to come.
by Patrick deWitt
Lucien (Lucy) Minor is the resident odd duck in the bucolic hamlet of Bury. Friendless and loveless, young and aimless, Lucy is a compulsive liar, a sickly weakling in a town famous for producing brutish giants. Then Lucy accepts employment assisting the Majordomo of the remote, foreboding Castle Von Aux. While tending to his new post as Undermajordomo, Lucy soon discovers the place harbors many dark secrets, not least of which being the whereabouts of the castle's master, Baron Von Aux. He also encounters the colorful people of the local village thieves, madmen, aristocrats, and Klara, a delicate beauty for whose love he must compete with the exceptionally handsome soldier Adolphus. Thus begins a tale of polite theft, bitter heartbreak, domestic mystery, and cold-blooded murder in which every aspect of humanity is laid bare for our hero to observe.
My Old Dog
by Laura T. Coffey & Lori Fusaro
"No Dog Should Die Alone" was the headline of journalist Coffey's TODAY show website story about photographer Fusaro's work with senior shelter pets. While generally calm, easy, and already house-trained, these animals often represent the highest-risk population at shelters. With gorgeous, joyful photographs and sweet, funny, true tales of old dogs learning new tricks, Coffey and Fusaro show that adopting a senior can be even more rewarding than choosing a younger dog. They may be slower moving and a tad less exuberant than puppies, but these pooches prove that adopting a senior brings immeasurable joy, earnest devotion, and unconditional love.
Raising the Barre
by Lauren Kessler
"When I was six, my father nicknamed me Laurisa Kesslova because, he said, all great dancers were Russians, and since I was going to be a great dancer, I needed a Russian name. I aim to reclaim that name." When Lauren Kessler was twelve, her ballet instructor crushed not just her dreams of being a ballerina but also her youthful self-assurance. Now, many decades and three children later, Kessler embarks on a journey to join a professional company to perform in The Nutcracker. Raising the Barre is more than just one woman's story; it is a story about shaking things up, taking risks and ignoring good sense, and forgetting how old you are and how you're "supposed" to act. It's about testing limits and raising the bar(re) on your own life.
by Ryan & Lucy Berkley
Artist Ryan Berkley is beloved for his iconic animal portraits. His fans have been clamoring for a book, and here it is: twenty-six animals with their backstories by his wife Lucy Berkley. This tongue-in-cheek illustrated social compendium will delight as well as make you think. The Berkleys run one of the top-selling shops on Etsy.com. They live in the woods of Portland, Oregon, with their boisterous daughter Ramona, baby son Linus, and hound dog Walker.
by Melvin R. Adams
At first, the basalt rims, high cold deserts, dry lakes, and vast expanses of grass and sage seem to be a barren realm. In fact, petite flowers bloom on rock shelves. Tiny organisms thrive in hot springs and salt water. Unique soil collects and retains water, allowing ancient pine stands to survive. Pikas build miniature grass haystacks to store winter food. Petroglyphs and remnants of ranches, mills, and mines provide evidence of human history. Indeed, remote southeast Oregon is a rich wonderland of mountains, forests, creatures, and more--one well worth exploring.
by Debra Music & Joe Whinney
Who doesn't love chocolate? Here are delicious sweet and savory chocolate recipes, along with the fascinating story of how North America's first organic and Fair Trade chocolate factory came to be (and why they are so passionate about how their chocolate is made). Theo Chocolate is dedicated to making the world a better place. From bean to bar, Theo Chocolate uses organic ingredients and is committed to Fair Trade practices, working closely with farmers around the world who grow the cocoa beans used in their chocolate. This book not only shares Theo's story and their passion for doing the right thing, but also celebrates the decadent pleasure of enjoying excellent chocolate, thanks to 75 recipes to make at home along with full-color photographs throughout.
by Jeff Smith
Jeff Smith, with his wife Erin, spearheaded the nation's first cider pub, Bushwhacker Cider, in his hometown of Portland, Oregon. Hard cider is far more than sweet apple juice with a kick. It is the fasted growing alcoholic beverage on the market today. After standing in the shadow of craft beer, hard cider is enjoying a much overdue renaissance. Craft Cider will uncover this unique beverage's history, the current state of cider in the marketplace, and recommend commercial ciders that represent the best in each style. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned brewer, Craft Cider will be the go-to book for all skill levels to learn new brewing techniques, explore recipes, and learn about the expansive history of this age-old drink.
by Maira Kalman
Dogs have lessons for us all. In Beloved Dog, Kalman illuminates our cherished companions as only she can. From the dogs lovingly illustrated in her acclaimed children's books to the real-life pets who inspire her still, Kalman's book is joyful, beautifully illustrated, and, as always, deeply philosophical. With humor and intelligence, Kalman gives voice to the dogs she adores, noting that they are constant reminders that life reveals the best of itself when we live fully in the moment and extend unconditional love. And it is very true, she writes, that the most tender, complicated, most generous part of our being blossoms without any effort, when it comes to the love of a dog.
by America's Test Kitchen
We have countless recipes at our disposal today but what are the real keepers, the ones that don't just feed us when we're hungry or impress our friends on Saturday night, but inspire us to get into the kitchen? At the forefront of American cooking for more than 20 years, the editors at America's Test Kitchen have answered this question in an essential collection of recipes that you won't find anywhere else: 100 Recipes Everyone Should Know How to Make. Gorgeous photography (shot right in the test kitchen) accompanies every recipe, revealing the finished dish as well as highlights of its preparation. Likely to stir debate among anyone interested in food and cooking, this book provides a snapshot of how we cook today and will galvanize even the most jaded cook to get into the kitchen.
by Daniel Lacerda
This beautifully designed book is a must-have for yogis of all levels and every practice. 2,100 Asanas is an unprecedented, meticulously crafted catalog of yoga poses and modifications. It is also a gorgeous work of art, showcasing the beauty and athleticism of the human form. Each photograph features an expert yogi performing the pose to perfection. The aesthetic is clean and modern. The book is organized into eight major types of poses-standing, seated, core, quadruped, backbends, inversions, prone, and supine-and further broken down by families of poses that progress from easiest to more challenging. Every pose is accompanied by the name of the pose in English and Sanskrit, a description of the modification, the Drishti point (eye gaze), the chakras affected and its benefits.
H Is for Hawk
by Helen Macdonald
When her father died suddenly on a London street, Macdonald was devastated. An experienced falconer, Helen had been captivated by hawks since childhood. She'd never before been tempted to train one of the most vicious predators, the goshawk. But in her grief, she saw that the goshawk's fierce and feral temperament mirrored her own. Resolving to purchase and raise the deadly creature as a means to cope with her loss, she adopted Mabel, and turned to the guidance of The Once and Future King author T.H. White's chronicle The Goshawk to begin her challenging endeavor. Projecting herself "in the hawk's wild mind to tame her" tested the limits of Macdonald's humanity and changed her life.
by Sonia Purnell
This is a long-overdue tribute to the extraordinary woman behind Winston Churchill. By his own admission, victory in the Second World War would have been impossible without his wife, Clementine. Until now, however, the only existing biography her was written by her daughter. Purnell finally gives Clementine her due with a deeply researched account that tells her life story, revealing how she was instrumental in softening FDR's initial dislike of her husband and paving the way for Britain's close relationship with America. It also provides a surprising account of her relationship with Eleanor Roosevelt and their differing approaches to the war effort. Any real consideration of Winston Churchill is incomplete without an understanding of his relationship with his wife, and Clementine is both the first real biography of this remarkable woman and a fascinating look inside their private world.
Boys in the Boat: Young Reader's Adaptation
by Daniel James Brown
Out of the depths of the Great Depression comes the astonishing tale of nine working-class boys from the American West who at the 1936 Olympics showed the world what true grit really meant. With rowers who were the sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the University of Washington's eight-oar crew was never expected to defeat the elite East Coast teams, yet they did, going on to shock the world by challenging the German boat rowing for Adolf Hitler. This deeply emotional yet easily accessible young readers adaptation features never-before-seen photographs, highly visual back matter, and an exclusive new introduction.
by Kevin Henkes
Five friends sit happily on a windowsill, waiting for something amazing to happen. The owl is waiting for the moon. The pig is waiting for the rain. The bear is waiting for the wind. The puppy is waiting for the snow. And the rabbit is just looking out the window because he likes to wait What will happen? Will patience win in the end? Or someday will the friends stop waiting and do something unexpected? Timeless, beautiful, and deeply heartfelt, this picture book about imaginative play, the seasons, friendship, and surprises marks a new pinnacle in Caldecott Medalist Kevin Henkes's extraordinary career.
January and February Readings at Annie Blooms:
Monday, January 11, 7pm
Mike's usual strategy was to gently stir the pot and wait for patterns to emerge, but this case was boiling over from the day Willimina showed up at his office. Freelance investigator Mike Ironwood doesn't hesitate for a moment when a lovely stranger asks him to help her get to the bottom of suspicious happenings on her family cattle ranch. Six days in, the case has turned up two dead bodies, an alphabet soup of secretive federal investigators, and a client who just might be The One. That's when things get complicated. Ochoco Reach introduces Mike Ironwood, his special ops brother Daniel, and Bucket, a Catahoula leopard dog who is equally at home herding cattle and pinning bad guys to the floor.
Turn of the Tide
Tuesday, January 12, 7pm
In Japan, you're always prepared for an earthquake. That's why Kai knows just what to do when the first rumbles shake the earth. And then he does the exact opposite of what you're supposed to do: He runs. And then the tsunami hits. Meanwhile, on the other side of the Pacific, Kai's cousin Jet sets sail off the coast of Astoria, Oregon. She knows she should have checked the tide. She "always" checks the tide. Except this time she didn't. When the biggest mistakes of their lives bring them together, Jet and Kai spend the summer regretting that one moment when they made the wrong decision. But there's something about friendship that heals all wounds and, together, Jet and Kai find the one thing they never thought they'd have again: hope.
The Man Who Wouldn't Kill Cats
Tuesday, January 12, 7pm
Why would anyone want to kill a cat? The reason most often put forward by animal "shelters" is that cat populations are so high, it is a mathematical necessity in order to make space available for continuing numbers of incoming felines. The source of the problem is complex. Cats breed prolifically. Their human companions often do not act responsibly, ignoring the need for spaying/neutering. Evan Kalik and his collaborators reject this conveyor belt mentality toward a species of sentient beings. This book contains stories about levels of dedication to cats that most of us are unwilling or unable to emulate. They can, nonetheless, inspire us to understand that cats are complex beings with profoundly rich inner lives. They are capable of and deserve being loved. They are also capable of loving us in return.
Lost & Found in Egypt
Thursday, January 29, 7pm
With more dumb guts than preparation, a middle-aged woman with a desk job takes a solo journey to the Middle East on the Get-There-and-Wing-it Plan. In a voice both raw and illuminating, Kyla Merwin explores the back roads, bustling bazaars, and shifting sands of Egypt and the Sinai Peninsula. Kyla's journeys take her through dramatic inner and outer landscapes--sometimes frightening, often hilarious and ultimately heartwarming--that finally bring her back home, and back to her most authentic self.
Tuesday, February 9, 7pm
Attorney Amanda Jaffe--star of Wild Justice and Ties That Bind--is back. When Dale Masterson, a wealthy lawyer who has built a career representing coal and oil companies, is found beaten to death in his lavish Oregon home, his fanatical eco-warrior son, Brandon, confesses to the murder. Weeks before Dale's death, a colleague at his large law firm was also the victim of a violent killing. Smart, fierce, and unafraid of confronting the truth, even if doing so puts her in danger, Amanda begins to dig deeper. Why would an innocent man confess to such a heinous crime? Is there a connection between Dale's murder and the brutal death of Christine? What she finds will force her to make the hardest professional decision of her life.
Bitter Is the Wind
Thursday, February 11, 7pm
From Portland author Jim McDermott, Bitter Is The Wind is a coming of age novel that traces the lives of George Johnson, Jr. and his father from the rural blue collar landscape of upstate New York in the 1970s to the halls of Wharton Business School and the heights of Wall Street. After a family tragedy strengthens their familial bond, the Johnsons contend with assembly line monotony, unfulfilled dreams of baseball stardom, and they learn what it means to be tempted, trapped, jailed and ignored by a seemingly uncaring God.
How to Live an Awesome Life
Wednesday, February 17, 7pm
Awe has the ability to awaken us. It can show us beauty and remind us who we are. It brings us closer to our purpose and passion and helps us create meaning. It helps us to live with the mystery in life, to survive the uncertainty of it all. It allows us to sink into the experience of living. When you live in awe of your life you are open to diverse experiences. Some are easy and joyous. Others totally suck. But you are okay because you know that within every experience the possibilities are limitless.
Polly Campbell designed this book to help you engage with the awesome qualities of your life.